Senior government officials held a crucial meeting to declare the first-ever heatwave emergency in the United Kingdom (UK). The meeting was called on Monday as forecasters predicted that record for Britain's hottest day could be broken in the coming days, with temperature expected to soar past the 104 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius) mark for the first time, The Telegraph reported. If that happens, there will be a possible danger to life, the outlet further said, quoting weather officials in the UK.
The crisis Cobra meeting was held inside the Downing Street to determine if a "level four" national emergency is needed after the Met Office issued an amber weather warning for large parts of the UK, indicating steep rise in temperature.
⚠️⚠️Amber Weather Warning updated⚠️⚠️— Met Office (@metoffice) July 12, 2022
Exceptionally high temperatures across parts of England and Wales, now updated to extend into Monday#heatwave
Latest info 👉https://t.co/QwDLMfRBfs
Stay #WeatherAware ⚠️ https://t.co/p1ywfq2dPZpic.twitter.com/y2GC5yqhBs
Such a warning has only ever been issued twice before, The Telegraph said in its report.
According to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), a "level four" national emergency is declared when the hot weather is so extreme that "illness and death may occur among the fit and healthy" as well as vulnerable people.
If implemented, it could cause widespread disruption to schools, travel, health services and even nuclear power plants.
"There's a possibility of a level four heatwave. If it gets above 40C, then it is likely to be a level four heatwave for the first time. I don't see how it couldn't be in those temperatures," a UKHSA spokesperson told The Telegraph.
East Midlands, East of England, London, South East, North East, North West, South West, Wales, West Midlands and Yorkshire and Humber will be covered under the UK's steepest climate emergency, Sky News reported.
On Monday, the soaring temperature ignited timber beams in London, which caused the train tracks on a bridge to catch fire. According to Express, the incident occurred on the track between Wandsworth Road and London Victoria.